Tuesday, December 27, 2005

A Salute To Klute: 1 Man 1 Vote, But 6 Men 1 "Whore"?

A Salute To Klute? One Man One Vote, But Six Brave Men & One "Whore"?

Imran Anwar Comments On American Soldiers' Rape Of Young Filipina

I am sorry that this is a tongue in cheek look at something that is a terribly serious issue. I hope this calls attention to the seriousness of the crime, while the tongue in cheek comment exposes the hypocrites and defenders of rapists.

As you all know, I generally support the vast majority of our brave US troops. Most of them unflinchingly and unquestioningly serve our country, wherever our greedy and currently clueless leaders send them, even while I criticize and oppose the Bush government's policies in places like Iraq.

But, there are times when it's not all Pride and Glory. "A Few Bad Men" (starring Tom Screws?) can show their true colors, and embarass us all.

In many cases their actions are actually driven by, if not approved, condoned and enjoyed by, vile power hungry leaders above them. In such cases, even though the soldiers are guilty of their own evil actions, they usually get away with murder or some of them become the only ones to take the fall.

Abu Ghraib prison abuse, the torture and beating deaths of Iraqi and Afghan prisoners without soldiers being punished for murder and many deaths of people who were not even charged with a crime, are some recent examples.

On the other hand, we can have people who are just low life, scumbags, who just happen to join the Army, show their true colors, do nasty things, embarras our military and our nation.

One such possible example was the recent rape (a girl passed out and sexually attacked by six soldiers is probably rape in most languages in the world) of a Filipina student by six (or at least four) American soldiers at Subic Bay, in the Philippines. The US military has not even handed the soldiers over for prosecution by law enforcement.

But, there are many here in the United States, who are actually attacking the victim! For example, on a Yahoo message board, under the title "SHE WAS LIKELY A PROSTITUTE", someone called jamesrobertdupree so philosophically contributed to the discussion, by saying that the girl must obviously have been a prostitute. "A hooker is a hooker" he wrote with great flourish.

That makes me worry about many other things. I will not even try to argue with that imbecile. Thankfully many other fellow Americans (including apparently an American female soldier) are putting him in his place.

But, if he is right, then I wonder, are these six soldiers, wearing our nation's uniform, such low life slime that Six of them can't find their own dates, or even six HOOKERS - one for each of them?

Is there a shortage of hookers in the Philippines? Can we send in Haliburton to set up a few new brothels?

Or, are these men so pathetic that they have to share one hooker? Yuck. I hope they at least take baths after raping, I mean, serving and protecting, such "hookers" in a country that has been our ally and strong supporter. We are supposed to win hearts and minds, not arms and legs, of our allies' citizens. And, even IF the girl had been a prostitute, does that make raping her OK?

You know me, I get to analyzing things. Now I am worried about our soldiers.

They had to share one "hooker"? Does this mean we need to increase our soldiers' salaries, so they can at least get one hooker each? Democracy would require that.

Would we have to give a Hooker Allowance based on the country they are stationed in, because, one would presume that, a hooker in Germany would cost more than a hooker in the Philippines?

Does the military have to set up a Tribunal to decide the Cost Of Hooking Allowance? Is it based on the length of service - or the length of something else?

Is there an annual change? Does it always go up (the allowance, I mean)?

What heading does that go under in the national defense budget? Could it be the Foreign Undocumented Communal Kinship account?

Then I wonder about the fairness of it all. We are just not being fair to such proud warriors as we have in these six soldiers. We promote the concept of One Man One Vote around the world, so our soldiers deserve One Man One Whore. It's only fair, even if the "hookers" are dark. And, I am sure to these soldiers they all look the same anyway, especially in the dark.

Then, I am also curious about the safety of our soldiers. Who knows what danger they put themselves in so you and I can sleep (separately!) safely at night, or do whatever we like to do at night.

To imagine six brave men are taking on this dangerous passed out hooker who was probably a grave threat to our national security and to your home and mine. I shudder... but that's all.

Did these soldiers use protection? I mean, did they use PROTECTION? Yeah, that's what I meant.

So, do they carry condoms among other "protective" equipment in the backpack?

Does the military get volume discounts for Trojan? Is Durex now a military supplier?

Are condoms carried by the US soldiers "weapons grade", because these brave men are obviously "battle hardened"?

I am sure for safety reasons, "Glow In The Dark" condoms must be forbidden, in case the enemy sees and targets them. (Though there would be no protection from a heat-seeking missile, I think).

After all that, I have to think about the social issues. Do these soldiers have wives here at home? What kind of "souveniers" are they bringing back home to their families? "Look honey, I picked up this hot case of gonorrhea" ?

And, finally, their parents must be proud of them, as we all should be, for their raising our flag "pole" so proudly INSIDE another country's "dark territory".

I am sorry, but I don't want to get hooked on this discussion.

In the end, it's probably best just to march on ---- after a Salute To Klute.

That's jsut In My Humble Opinion.... What do you think?


Sunday, December 25, 2005

Holiday Is Not War

Sunset At Old Inlet, Fire Island, Long Island, New York © Imran Anwar

On this great evening, let me say to you:

A Merry Christmas, Happy Chanukah, Great Kawanzaa, Good Divali, Eid Mubarak, and Happy New Year to you and everything else that you may celebrate.

Even as a Muslim living in America, I have no problem with Merry Christmas being said when it IS Christmas time. But, obviously, it does not make sense for me to say that to my Jewish, Hindu, Buddhist, and Muslim friends. So, Happy Holidays is pretty safe and especially when greetings people whose religion you do not know, or when emailing several people, for example.

I cannot stand the dumb political correctness of some quarters calling a Christmas Tree put up on December 25 as a HOLIDAY TREE. I also have a problem with the other extreme of political correctness (and being fair too) of including every group in every greeting.

SO, for short, Happy Holidays is fine, smart, and convenient, as long as it's not done for PC reasons. So, what's the problem with THAT?

Saying HAPPY HOLIDAYS is not some sort of "War against Christmas" but simply common sense and convenient. I think it is DUMB when people say Christmas is under attack, as if there is some group of people waiting to have this fun time of year banned in the USA.

What IS and SHOULD be under attack is religion and its symbols being shoved into government, where they do NOT belong.
The Government should not be putting up Christmas Trees. If a Borders Book Store allows the local Jewish community to hold functions at their holy days inside the store's premises, one would like to believe they would extend the same courtesy to Muslims, if asked. (I am looking into that right now actually).

In the meantime, Happy Holidays everyone, everywhere! Don't forget to check out the Christmas Tree at Rockefeller Center!


Saturday, December 24, 2005

USSR Style Gulaglopoly Government, Now In USA

The whole world knows how stupid and how un-American the behavior of the Bush government has been towards people it detains, whether in Iraq or in Guantanamo Bay. It is even worse to find out that the vast majority of detainees are NOT a threat. NO credible information to prevent terrorism has been found there.

The latest news item really shook me. It relates to two Chinese minority Muslim detainees who have been found to be completely innocent, no threat to national security or any kind of problem, but according to a judge, the court does not have the authority to free them.

I remember growing up in Pakistan, reading about the kinds of "permanent limbo" critics of the evil Soviet empire would fall into, and never be able to get out of. And, I remember reading how strong and freedom-protecting American law was. Well, that was then, this is now.

Let's be clear on one thing. I don't have any sympathy even for AlQaeda / Al-Qaida sympathizers.

But to have innocent people put away into a black hole from which they are not let go even when they are innocent makes me shudder. Amazing, sad and scary that this gulag mentality governemt is running today in the USA and not the USSR.

ADDED: The biggest laugh I got this Christmas was not from some fat Santa saying Ho Ho Ho but from reading a New York Times news report that the US will not hand off Iraqi detainees to Iraqi authorities, "officials are satisfied that the Iraqis are meeting United States standards for the care and custody of detainees."

Oh, yeah. THAT is what we want. Everyone else should follow the great standards and lessons of prisoner treatment at Abu Ghraib prison, prisoner rights abuse at Guantanamo Bay and prisoner "rendition" and flying around the world to be tortured.

The Bush government is definitely the shining light of how to treat prisoners.


Thursday, December 22, 2005

Better Never Than Late, Better Late Than Now

The simple fact of the matter is, the Patriot Act has done little (if anything) to prevent Bin Laden or his henchmen from plotting our destruction, regardless of what country we live in or come from. Yet, our Constitution and civil rights are being shredded, every day, not by AlQaeda but by George Bin Bush.

The latest news reports say that the US Congress temporarily extended the so-called Patriot Act (what its highly un-American nature has to do with Patriotism can only be explained by some Bush-whacked fascist or neo-con) until February 3, 2006, thereby avoiding the pressure for some people to make it permanent.

This delay is a good thing. The way this Act is written or being pushed, it's Better Late Than Now, and Better Never Than Late.

One hopes there will be some serious debate on the dangers it poses to AMERICAN values, and how little it does to stop AlQaeda from killing people around the world.


Sunday, December 18, 2005

Grady's White Is Black?

You already know that MORE than 2125 Americans are already dead in Iraq while George Bush & his henchmen celebrated Mission Accomplished with his dumb stunt aircraft carrier landing. An apparent supporter of George Bush, Grady, actually posted a reasonable comment in reponse to my commentary on the topic.

He disagrees with me, but the reason it is worth mentioning is that it is actually different from the usual "Support Bush or You Are a Traitor" 'logic' that neocons and Bush supporters, as well as modern day crusaders, spout in the name of "patriotism".

Even though the vision of Grady's White (sorry, couldn't resist), where Black still pervades, is wrong, I respect the sincerity. He seems hung up on my being "hung up" on the words "Mission Accomplished".

But I am not hung up on "Mission Accomplished" but the fact(s) that

a) Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11
b) regime change was NOT described as the mission (check a great posting found online on how many dozen times WMDs were mentioned in Bush' speech before attacking Iraq compared to ONE mention of democracy)
c) end of bombing a place does not make a mission complete
d) MORE Americans died since then by Bush's CHOICE
e) almost 2200 MORE Americans are dead and no end is in sight
f) Haliburton is making all the money while American lives pay for it
g) NO WMD were found as they did not exist
h) Iraq went from secular to Shiite pro-Iran dominated
i) Iraq went from stable to an ALQAEDA HQ
j) MORE terror attacks have happened since then worldwide
k) Americans are STILL at risk even AT HOME despite 9/11 and the 9/11 Commission's recommnedations NOT being put in place.

The only one whose Mission seems to be Accomplished is Bin Laden, and that Thanks To Bush.


Saturday, December 17, 2005

Howard's End. Siriusly speaking

I am all for free speech (something I complain about all the time as the Bush administration tries to turn the USA into a dictatorship ripping Constitutional freedoms to shreds). But I also do not think someone just being obnoxious or vulgar on-air makes them some sort of hero.

What amazes me is this. Howard Stern, the "shock jock", whose shows on radio and TV have merely or at least mostly consisted of rude, vulgar, obnoxious, borderline pornographic, profanity laced insignificant drivel, is being considered a martyr or some sort of hero for being "pushed out" of FM radio.

On top of that Sirius Radio is reportedly paying $500 million (over several years) basically to have Howard Stern all to themselves. Good for them, and Good Riddance from Radio and TV that everyone else enjoys.

I admire him for learning to play the media to his own ends, and something a lot of people try to copy. I do respect him for openly criticizing George W. Bush before the election.

But how impotent, politically speaking, Howard Stern is, was proven when George Bush actually WON this last election - despite Stern's calling to his "huge" audience to oust Bush.

I was amazed to read this "article", on AOL, basically sucking up to Howard Stern - as if Nelson Mandela had been sentenced to life in prison by the South African government.

What's next? An article crying that Paris Hilton is a great actress who does not get good movie parts (except the kind she makes herself) because she is being discriminated against?

Sorry, but that kind of idolizing of Stern does not make any sense.

I can put anyone on air with 1000 F-words per hour, and transvestite midget guests who love to have sex with their 7 feet tall sisters, and you would basically get a Howard Stern replacement show.

With Sirius paying $500 MILLION for that, I made sure to pick XM Radio as my satellite radio provider. I would not want my subscription money going to finance pure crap and trash. So, if Sirius wants to pay an obscene amount of money to start up Howard's obscenities again, more power (and Watts) to them. But, In My Humble Opinion, it will not last long.

To me this is not a new start but just a certain Howard's End. Siriusly speaking.

What do you think?


Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Ford's Hot New Slogans (Caution, Racy Language)

You have already seen the earlier posting on this topic of Ford's decision to stop advertising in gay media and now reversing that decision also. Now that we have seen Ford cave in twice, first to the fundamentalists, and now to the gays, it's time for some hot new slogans for Ford. Please ignore this if you find commonly use racy language offensive. Thanks.

- Ford: Quality is (blow) Job 1
- Built Ford Soft
- Ford Bends Over For You
- Ford We Try (But Can't Get) Harder
- Ford: I'm Shoving It
- Ford Model 8: We'll Leave The Blinkers On For You
- Ford: We Cave In To Both Sides

Bronco tagline: Ford Bucking The Trend,
or wait, is it: Bored Fvc#ing The Rearend ?

As I said, sorry for the crude language but Ford remains a joke of a car company.

Anyway, wherever you stand on the issue of gay rights, at least Ford made a business decision based on business, not the demands of some religious or fundamentalist group. What do you think?

Monday, December 12, 2005

Dictator Saddam Or Daily Death? What A Pick(le)!

Iraqis go to the polls today, while George Bush finally mentions that about 30,000 Iraqi CIVILIANS have died since his elective war for oil began. Who knows what the actual number of casualsties is. We already saw how well the Iraqi insurgents greeted the US as liberators.... We already saw how Bush declared Mission Accomplished... We already saw how Cheney said the Iraqi insurgency was in its dying throes... We already saw how Iraq went from a dictator run stable secular country to a breeding ground for terror, on the verge of civil war.

What I hope we never get to see is the return of Saddam Hussain.... How sad that an evil man like Saddam Hussain would get elected if he was allowed to run for Iraqi elections.

Iraqis who hated and feared him probably think at least they were not getting blown up taking their kids to school....

Saddam killed his opponents (as every dictator in the world and some elected rulers do too, with the blessings of the USA) but the rest of the country was safe. Now, no one knows if they will make it back home alive on a daily basis.

Give them Saddam or give them daily death? They'd sadly pick Saddam. So, Bush would have killed 30,000-100,000 for nothing but oil company profits and Dick Cheney's Haliburton friends. What do you think?


Thursday, December 08, 2005

You go, gays... I mean, guys!

This is an interesting news issue. Some radical Christian and anti-gay activists have been pressuring American businesses, like Ford, Wells Fargo bank, etc. to pull advertising from "gay" publications.

On the one hand, even as an independent, not tied to "I cannot accept this as a Republican" or "Everything goes, because I am a Democrat" points of view, I can see SOME logic, as discussed here in this blog, to religious institutions' tryig to stick to their century old traditions and values when it comes to dealing with sexuality-related issues. e.g. the Catholic Church and its (somewhat strange and illogical) stance on gays in the clergy.

On the other hand, I think it is borderline fascism, reminiscent of the Taliban in Afghanistan, to have religion-driven neo-con Bible-thumpers attacking and pressuring legitimate businesses, like Ford or Wells Fargo, from marketing to legitimate customers, in legitimate media, using legitimate ads, which do not in ANY way get in the face of these nut-case religious fanatics.

It would be one thing for these Bible-thumpers to condemn Ford (which I do not much care for anyway, and it seems which consumers don't much care for either) if Ford was showing two gay men kissing in an ad for a Ford FOCUS ;-) in, say, a "general/family" magazine. But, if Ford is catering to a demographic group, gays, by advertising to them in "THEIR" media, much like they could marked their lousy cars to Hispanics in Spanish media, or in local Indian/Pakistani publications read by engineers with jobs in Silicon valley, WHAT is the problem? It is merely intolerance of the right wing fanatics, doing its best to impose its will on the nation and society.

Quite frankly, I support gays having the right to live together in official relationships especially when the bast majority of people in gay relationships are not about "in your face" statement-making. Yet, I do not agree with their demanding such a relationship being officially called "marriage". (Check out the podcasts at http://imran.com/media/podcasts/ for more on that).

I somewhat understand, if not agree, with the Church or religious organizations limiting how they deal with openly gay people (or women) in the clergy. But, I think this attack on businesses by right wing fundamentalist Christians should be unacceptable to all Americans, gay, straight or confused.

This is one slippery slope that will lead to the eventual erosion of religious and social freedoms that make this country the greatest place in the world to live, no matter what we believe, no matter what we practice.

I am told by a commentator that Wells Fargo did NOT cave in. But, if Ford and others are caving in, Shame on them. What valid customer group will they pull back from next based on some (a)moral religion-thumping non-majority's demands? What will be the next pullback criterion? Color? Race? Marital Status? Religion?

This is an important issue for all Americans, regardless of sexual orientation. What the gay community needs to do is show their own clout, by boycotting Ford and closing their accounts at any vendor that sells them out as a group. You go, gays, errr, guys, I mean, people ....!


Monday, December 05, 2005

Sellout Judy Miller Sells Out Even More

Yes, it is true, sometimes I cannot stand Ariana Huffington's huffing and puffing commentaries, but her blog has been a pleasant surprise. I had seen a very interesting piece she wrote (and on which she got flak but was proven true) about the world famous sellout from the New York Times, Judy Miller.

Judy Miller, if you recall, was the person who was in bed (figuratively, but I would not be surprised if there was something more literal to the story) with Hailburton, I mean, US Vice President Dick Cheney's Chief Of Staff, Scooter Libby. She was helping spread lies about Iraq and weapons of mass destruction (WMD) that Iraq never had! She chose to go to jail rather than say what she was up to. But she made it sound like it was a great sacfrifice for journalism. No such truth. She has a lot of financial rewards lined up after she got out of jail.

That there is a book deal at the end of Ms. Miller's great "mission" and "sacrifice" and "stand on principles" is not the surprise. It is that she claimed she was standing on principle when in fact it was personal glory and (if this news item is true) financial benefit she was fighting for.

I am all for standing by one's word. I am all for protecting your sources.

But, if I have a source that tells me about a murder that has been committed would I not have to divulge the details to law enforcement?

If the law is clear on protecting US operatives undercover, why would Ms. Milller have the right to choose to break and ignore the law?

So, I am not surprised by the news/claims I am hearing about Ms. Miller, and I am not surprised at how the whole issue of outing a CIA operative is being minimized by the administration to protect M/s Libby & Rove.

I am just surprised that things can be so blatantly done all around, and we, living in the most informed society in the world, can merely express ourselves on blogs?

Imran Anwar

2125 More Americans Dead, Mission Accomplished?

Update: Number of American War Dead In Iraq Approaching...OOOOPs, PASSED 2000...OOOPS 2125

I wonder when George W. Bush will do his next carrier landing --- when the number of Americans killed in Iraq & Afghanistan exceeds those killed on 9/11 by non-Iraqi terrorists?

And what will the banner say behind him next time?

"Bring It On"? "Mission Accomplished version 3000"?


Sunday, December 04, 2005

Blog, Or Not A Blog? That is the question

Not long ago, I had read an article in a newsweekly magazine, which mentioned some of the more popular Blogs out there. It included mention of some that were getting lots of traffic (and hence revenue too).

One that was mentioned was Wonkette. I went to that site, and enjoyed the witty, sarcastic and biting humor of that team. What I could not find, for the life of me, was a place to comment on any entry.

Eventually, giving up, I wrote to them by email. I did not get a response. I wrote again, and asked, something like, Is this a blog and if so where can I comment. And, I got a short, curt, reply saying that there was no place to comment and they/he/she guessed Wonkette was not a blog.

That got me thinking. (Yes, I know, a dangerous activity).

What exactly is the most common perception of what we Bloggers are as a group? Are we individuals or are we just one small aspect of a whole big media opportunity to control another form of communication with the public?

How important is it for a what most people consider a person's BLOG to be driven by that person (with maybe a few helping hands for HTML, promotion, etc.)?

How essential is reader/writer interaction for a web page or web site of commentaries to be called a Blog? If there is no reader input, no comments area, then, sure, it is still a "web log" of someone, but how different is a site like Wonkette with a team of 15-20 people from an opinion site like a conservative or liberal magazine's web site with 20, 30, or 300 staffers?

Does a Blog not conjure images of us as solo-fliers expressing opinions for all (or no one) to see and read?

Is a Blog still a Blog if 30 people put it together? Should such a site's revenues be considered money going to "bloggers" or to "medium-sized" or big-media?

A good example (though non-Blog example) is Maureen Dowd of the New York Times. She does not have a blog (at least I could not find it) but ype in MaureenDowd.com in your browser and you are taken to the New York Times' site. So, if she wrote a blog, and it generated revenues for the New York Times, is that money considered revenues of "us" bloggers or more money going to big media.

What do you think?


Saturday, December 03, 2005


George Bush made yet another speech, and we got yet another "plan for victory". Maureen Dowd wrote a great piece in the New York Times about it today. After Bush's speech and the events of the last two days, where do we stand with this new plan?

Let me see...

- The Iraqis are so well trained that they are losing more SOLDIERS than insurgents every day.

- We (the US) are executing on our plan so well we lose like 15 soldiers as soon as Bush's speech is over.

- SECULAR Iraq under evil Saddam is now ETHNIC Iraq under incompetent leaders.... and falling deeper under the influence of Shiite Iran....

Could Khomeini and Bin Laden COMBINED have planned it better than Bush-Cheney-Rumsfeld?

I wonder.


Thursday, December 01, 2005

WHO wants to encourage censorship!?

The other day I read a posting on a Yahoo message board, where some lame-brained RIGHT-WING neo-con was accusing the liberal LEFT of promoting censorship.

And, I had to say, How IDIOTIC to say that the LEFT wants to encourage censorship.

I am no fan of often Democratic AND Liberal led POLITICAL CORRECTNESS.

But the real enemies of freedom of speech, and liberty, are now the RIGHT WING, mostly Republicans now backed by fundamentalist Christians.

They would not want anyone to question any government policy set up by Bush, Cheney and their gang of secretive, court-constitution-congress-bypassing war-mongers. They would shove the constitution into a museum, and would insist that questioning torture, corrupt government, Haliburton driven wars etc. should not be allowed. Yet, we are expected to do that, and BE PATRIOTIC by giving up the VERY BASIC rights that this country gives us, the right to speak freely AND to hold our government accountable.

These RIGHT wingers are censoring facts, truth and even the news (when they are not planning to bomb Al-Jazeera TV!), yet they ARE adding another kind of speech... where it does not belong..... RELIGION in SCHOOLS and GOVERNMENT places.

Don't forget to say your prayers before doing your government court or school job, or teaching Adam & Eve to SCIENCE students.